I’ve been craving ramen for weeks, but my favorite Japanese restaurant has been closed so I haven’t been able to get my Japanese fix. So I decided to make ramen at home. Typically, I make a quick and easy ramen with chicken stock, but I had some pork bones in my freezer, so I decided to make an old-fashioned stock. It was yum, yum, yum.
What is Shoyu Ramen?
Shoyu Ramen is a soy-based broth type of ramen. There are two main components to this ramen. First is the rich dashi broth, which is made by simmering pork bones in chicken stock with kombu (dried kelp) and bonito flakes. You can find kombu and bonito flakes at your local Asian grocery stores, or online. Dashi broth is essential part of Japanese cuisine, and it is used to make many Japanese staple soups.
The second component of Shoyu Ramen is the tare sauce – the soy basting sauce that is made with soy sauce, sake, mirin. The tare adds another layer of depth to this ramen.
This recipe for Shoyu Ramen would be perfect to make on a weekend when you have some extra time. The broth is simmered on the stove with pork bones and aromatics for 3+ hours, and the flavor is so rich and filling. It’s the BEST.
What I love the most about making ramen at home is that you can add any of your favorite vegetables and toppings. A soft boiled egg is very traditional, sliced bamboo shoots, and bean sprouts make a great addition to homemade shoyu ramen.
I cooked my Shoyu Ramen broth with pork butt (removed the fat). After the pork butt was done cooking, I flavored it with the tare (soy basting sauce) and sliced it and used it as a topping. I also added frozen mixed vegetables that I keep on hand, as well as shiitake mushrooms and bok choy.
This recipe for Shoyu Ramen is so amazing, but it does take a few hours of simmering on the stove. This is more of a weekend recipe.
If you want a shortcut for the broth (no bones needed): boil beef stock with a tablespoon of Miso paste. Add some dried Shiitake mushrooms, a tsp of bonito flakes and 1/2 sheet of kombu (dried kelp). Cook for 30 minutes (removing the kelp after 10 minutes), and you’ll still have a very flavorful ramen broth.
Weekend Shoyu Ramen with Homemade Pork Broth
For the Dashi Stock
- 4 lbs pork bones
- 1 knob (1-2 inches) ginger, peeled and sliced
- 6 cloves garlic, peeled
- 3 scallions, washed and left whole
- 1 sheet kombu (dried kelp)
- 1 tbsp bonito flakes
- 6 dried Shiitake mushrooms, stems removed
- 10 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups water
- 1-2 lbs pork belly or pork butt
For the Tare Sauce
- 3/4 cup soy sauce
- 1/2 cup sake or Chinese cooking wine
- 1/2 cup mirin
- 1 knob (1/2 inch) ginger, peeled and sliced
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- Ramen noodles
- bamboo shoots (canned), rinsed and sliced (optional)
- bean sprouts (optional)
- soft boiled egg, cut in half (optional)
- scallions, chopped (optional)
- seaweed, sliced into strips (optional)
- bok choy, sliced in half (optional)
- any of your favorite vegetables (optional)
Cook the Dashi Stock
- Wash the pork bones in cold water. Place them in a large pot of salted water and parboil on the stove for 3-4 minutes, or until the impurities and foam rise to the surface. Remove from heat and drain the water. Rinse each bone with cold water.
- In a large stockpot, add the pork bones, ginger, garlic, whole scallions, kombu sheet, bonito flakes, and Shiitake mushrooms. Add the chicken stock and water. Bring to a boil and allow the stock to boil for 20 minutes. Skim off any foam that might rise to the surface from the pork.
- Remove the kombu sheet after 20 minutes. Lower the heat, cover and simmer for 3 hours.
- After 3 hours, add the pork belly (or pork butt) and cook for another hour. (If you have a larger piece of pork belly or butt, cook for 20 minutes longer.) Your pork is ready when it's tender and be can easily sliced.When it's cool enough, slice the pork belly or butt into 1/2 to 1 inch slices (or however thick you prefer your meat to be). Marinate the pork belly (or pork butt) with 1 tablespoon of the tare sauce for at least one hour. (Tare sauce steps below). Remove the Shiitake mushrooms from the broth and slice thinly. Set aside. Drain the broth and set aside. Reserve any of the meat from the pork bones for your ramen bowl.
Make the Tare Sauce
- As you are waiting for the pork belly or pork butt to cook, make your Tare sauce.Combine the Tare Sauce ingredients (soy sauce, sake or Chinese cooking wine, mirin, sliced ginger, and crushed garlic) in a small saucepan. Cook it over medium heat for 5 minutes. Remove from heat and set aside.
Assemble Your Ramen Bowl
- Cook your Ramen noodles according to package instructions. Drain the noodles and add desired amount of noodles into a serving bowl.Top with the marinated pork meat, soft boiled egg, and any other cooked vegetables you want. Add a 1 tablespoon of tare sauce into the bowl. Ladle with hot, boiling soup broth and enjoy.